Copper hits 6-week low, other metals fall after weak China data

15th August 2023

By: Reuters


Font size: - +

LONDON - Prices for copper and other base metals fell in London on Tuesday, hurt by a worsening demand outlook from top consumer China after the country released slower industrial output growth data and falling investment in its property sector.

Benchmark copper CMCU3 on the London Metal Exchange (LME) was down 1.2% at $8 189.5 a metric ton by 11:31 GMT, after hitting $8 163.9, its lowest since June 29. Copper, used in power and construction, is on track for its fourth session of decline in a row.

"Base metals could face persistent pressures amid slowing industrial production and declining property investment in China but more supportive policies could set a floor to prevent excessive price declines," said Amelia Xiao Fu, head of commodity market strategy at Bank of China International.

Beijing cut key policy rates to shore up activity on Tuesday but analysts said more support was needed to revitalise growth.

LME aluminium dipped 0.1% to $2 144.5 per metric ton, after touching its lowest since July 7 of $2 136.5. The discount for near-term delivery compared with the three-month LME aluminium contract climbed to its highest since the global financial crisis of 2008, indicating weak demand.

Other growth-dependent metals were also down sharply with LME nickel hitting its lowest since July, 2022, at $19 795 per metric ton and zinc touching the weakest level since June 6 at $2 305.

LME's daily data showed large arrivals of zinc to the LME-registered warehouses in Singapore. 

Nickel fell 0.8% to $19 935, zinc declined 1.4% to $2 316, lead rose 0.3% to $2,102.5, while tin lost 2.1% to $24 790.

Tin has been under pressure from large inventories and weak demand despite a mining ban in the world's third-biggest mining nation Myanmar.

Edited by Reuters


The content you are trying to access is only available to subscribers.

If you are already a subscriber, you can Login Here.

If you are not a subscriber, you can subscribe now, by selecting one of the below options.

For more information or assistance, please contact us at

Option 1 (equivalent of R125 a month):

Receive a weekly copy of Creamer Media's Engineering News & Mining Weekly magazine
(print copy for those in South Africa and e-magazine for those outside of South Africa)
Receive daily email newsletters
Access to full search results
Access archive of magazine back copies
Access to Projects in Progress
Access to ONE Research Report of your choice in PDF format

Option 2 (equivalent of R375 a month):

All benefits from Option 1
Access to Creamer Media's Research Channel Africa for ALL Research Reports, in PDF format, on various industrial and mining sectors including Electricity; Water; Energy Transition; Hydrogen; Roads, Rail and Ports; Coal; Gold; Platinum; Battery Metals; etc.

Already a subscriber?

Forgotten your password?